We all know that rum and Coke go together like, well, rum and Coke. And whiskey and ginger ale are a classic combination. Even Diet Coke and vodka have become an accepted duo, thanks to Taylor Swift’s powers of persuasion. But what about other soda and spirit combos? To find out which unlikely duos work well together, we took a tip from our college days and started mixing whatever booze with whatever soda. Some of the experiments were epic fails (sorry, mezcal and Mountain Dew), but others were shockingly tasty. The next time you’re looking to order an easy but unexpected Highball at a bar—or only have access to a vending machine for mixers—try one of these two-ingredient drinks.
While a Seven and Seven (Seagram’s 7 whiskey and 7 Up) is a widely known cocktail, a Whiskey Sprite is a somewhat less common order. But the duo works beautifully together, especially if you opt for a lighter Irish whiskey or younger bourbon. It’s easy drinking with a touch of spice—like a Whiskey Ginger on a break.
Whiskey + Mountain Dew
Behold, the lazy man’s Whiskey Sour. Zesty Mountain Dew and whiskey come together in a refreshing, low-brow approximation of the classic cocktail. If you really want to lean into the drink, use moonshine in place of standard whiskey. You’ll be just like Willy the Hillbilly, the moonshining mascot on the original label.
Here’s a combination only the most desperate 22-year-old would try at the house party. But should they be brave enough, they would be richly rewarded. Somehow, when combined, spiced rum and 7 Up taste like cream soda.
Jägermeister + Mountain Dew
We know, you swore off Jäger 10 years ago, but the bitter, herbaceous spirit is making a comeback in the cocktailing world and worth trying again. It also happens to be surprisingly nuanced and delicious with Mountain Dew. The soda brings bright citrus notes, while the Jäger adds tannic depth. Yes, those are things we really said about Jäger and Dew. And we meant them.
Rye Whiskey + Cherry Coke
Sweet, fruity Cherry Coke and spicy rye come together to make a spritzy, Manhattan-esque cola combo. With notes of black pepper, this Highball is an easy sipper that would go well with foods like saucy barbecue. Try it at your next tailgate.
Kahlúa + Pepsi
Coffee cola—that’s what Pepsi and Kahlúa taste like together. The sweet coffee liqueur amps up Pepsi’s slightly more subtle flavors, while Pepsi gives the drink aggressive effervescence. Pepsi devotees, here’s your cocktail, finally.
Orange Soda + Fireball
The combination of orange soda and everyone’s favorite flavored whisky tastes like straight up Red Hots. No one will ever call this drink a sophisticated cocktail, but if you’re looking for a way to consume Fireball that doesn’t call for shots, this should be it.